Coaticook Valley, Eastern Townships, Qc - Jessica Bélisle
Discovering Coaticook Valley.
With everything going on in the world, this summer was the perfect opportunity to take advantage of the incredible cycling paths that Quebec has to offer. Although I am very fond of my classic Eastern Townships rides, I took it upon myself to venture off the beaten path and try something new: explore the Coaticook Valley loop. With its breathtaking scenery, challenging climbs, and fun cafe stops, this route was without a doubt one of my favorite discoveries of the summer!
Coaticook Valley: The rundown
✢ Starting Point: Compton
✢ Distance: 90 kilometers, 100% paved
✢ Elevation: 1300 meters
✢ Intermediate to advanced level
The Coaticook Valley route is a loop that passes through seven of the twelve municipalities which make up the Township region; riding from Compton, Sainte-Edwidge-de-Clifton, Saint-Malo, Saint-Venant-de-Paquette, East-Hereford, Saint-Herménégilde and finally trough Coaticook. Alternating between mountains and forests, the beautiful landscapes of greenery stretches far into the horizon, making it impossible not to smile with every pedal stroke of the ride!
The course is entirely paved, meaning that a road bike is suitable for the 90-kilometer distance and the 1300 meters of elevation that make up the loop. During the ride, you will have the chance to take a small detour to stop at a lookout point in Saint-Malo, which is one that should not be missed. Saint-Malo is a small village with one of the highest elevation in all of Quebec, and has a tower that has been built specifically for observing the panoramic 360-degree view of the breathtaking surrounding mountains. The lookout can be found by riding onto the main street, just before turning on route 253 towards Saint-Venant-de-Paquette.
5 highlights de la ride :
➋ The La Montagnaise tower in Saint-Malo
➌ The Café-Terrasse in St-Venant-de-Paquette for a snack. The local products are highlighted and the view is sublime!
➍ Wide shoulder and quality road paving
➎ The tranquility of the rural country roads
As you would expect in Estrie, the course is very steep. However, one of the elements that makes this ride so much fun is the rolling hills that are never-ending. With a succession of several steep climbs and descents, the elevation allows you to keep your momentum and retain your speed, making the climbs pleasant and allowing you to vary your efforts.
Upon your return back to Compton, make sure not to miss out on the opportunity to dine at the 5th Element restaurant. Refreshing beers from local microbreweries including that of Coaticook are served there along with food that is beyond delicious and the perfect reward for all of that climbing! Without a doubt, this loop and the many gourmet stops along the way will become a new classic!
The spot for a snack halfway:
The post-ride spot for a meal:
Find the ride on Strava here!
Jessica Bélisle, proud ambassador of the PEPPERMINT collective ♡